Monthly Archives: October 2017

Android, Apple, Windows or BlackBerry for business?

Android, Apple, Windows or BlackBerry for business?

Unsurprisingly, various Apple iPhones including the iPhone 6 and iPhone 7, alongside Samsung models including the Samsung S7 and Galaxy J3, topped the list of the highest selling smartphones in the world (IHS’ list of 10 ‘Best-selling smartphones for 2016). But is the popular choice always the best choice? With so many models on the market, choosing the right smartphone for yourself and your employees can prove a difficult, and somewhat overwhelming task. To narrow down the choice, we recommend firstly finding out which operating system is best for your business.

Operating systems

Apple

Apple’s iPhones run on iOS, the mobile operating system developed specifically by Apple. The Apple iOS is known to be a very ‘closed’ operating system. For example, if an app is developed and Apple doesn’t like it, it won’t be getting onto the iPhone. In principle, this makes the Apple operating system one of the most secure, and thus beneficial to your business’s mobile security. However the high level of control in the Apple environment can also mean a lack of freedom, as the operating system locks you into the Apple world – from iTunes for your music to iCloud for your back-ups. For example, last year Apple rejected Samsung’s Pay Mini app, for ‘undisclosed reasons’, which would have allowed iOS users to use Samsung’s Mobile Payment service. The Apple devices also come at a premium price, however ‘iMessage’ offers a way to message between iPhones without any SMS charge, giving your business a cost-effective way to communicate. When it comes to your conversations, both iMessages and FaceTime are encrypted, so hackers waiting in the middle of a conversation won’t be able to see, hear or read what you are communicating. While Siri, Apple’s virtual assistant is now able to control third-party apps, allowing you to use voice commands to initiate a Skype call with a client or colleague, order an Uber taxi for your next meeting, or send a message on Slack, a chat app specifically designed for business use.

New iPhones

Android

Android comes from the search engine giant Google. Unlike Apple, Google has allowed many phone companies to license it’s operating system, so you’ll find the Android OS in brands such as HTC, Samsung and Sony, amongst many others. This carries both a benefit and a weakness – the openness has meant that many of the large phone companies have tweaked the basic system, so you may experience a slightly different version dependent on the brand you choose. The openness has also heightened the level of competition. With so many Android phones to compete against one another, most android models will come at a cheaper price tag than the Apple devices, or pack some stand-out features such as the eye-popping 4K display featured in the Sony Xperia XZ Premium or the knock-out camera featured in the new Google Pixel 2 (Rated a phenomenal 98/100 on industry benchmark website DxOMark, placing it as the best smartphone camera in their rankings!). The Android home-screens are typically made up of app icons and widgets that automatically update – highly useful for your business calendar and emails.  
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BlackBerry

After a few years out of the limelight, BlackBerry came back with a vengeance. Releasing the KEYone earlier in May this year, as the “World’s most secure Android Smartphone”, with the world’s first embedded fingerprint sensor and largest battery ever featured in a BlackBerry. The KEYone is also preloaded with DTEK™ by BlackBerry, offering constant security monitoring and protection of your operating system and apps by letting you know when your privacy could be at risk and how you can take action to improve it. Beyond BlackBerry’s renowned security features, BB models feature the legendary BlackBerry Hub which brings all your messages into one consolidated place; including emails, texts and messages from any social media account.  Another benefit of BlackBerry  Hub, is the ability to manage multiple email accounts without switching between apps, with support for Gmail, Yahoo Mail, Outlook, Microsoft Exchange accounts, and many other IMAP and POP3 email providers. While the provided email and messaging infrastructure removes another pressure from your business. Finally, BlackBerry offers work-life balance which lets you securely separate any of your work content from your personal content. Almost giving you two devices in one and removing worry for your IT department and your private employees. 

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Windows Phone

Finally, we have the Windows operating system from Microsoft. Models running on Microsoft’s mobile version of Windows include the HP Elite X3, Microsoft Lumia 950 XL and Nokia Lumia 930. Windows models feature Continuum, meaning you can use the phone on a larger display with a PC-like experience including the ability to control it with a mouse and keyboard. Windows phones also offer a personal experience with the ‘live tiles’ feature that lets you customise your home screen, pinning the apps you choose to Start. You can even set the size for each app, making it twice the width of a standard tile, or a tiny quarter-size tile – useful for example if you wanted to see the full details of your next appointment. Another large benefit has to be the built-in Office apps, allowing your employees to work on the go with familiar applications such as Word or Excel. However, there are not many Windows smartphones available. In fact Microsoft hasn’t launched a new Windows smartphone model for more than a year and has sold all licence rights to Nokia products to the Finnish company HMD. However, models are still available and the recent third-party HP Elite X3, is the best Windows 10 smartphone you can buy today.

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Great news! Vodafone WiFi Calling at no extra cost

Make calls over WiFi with no additional charge

Voda Wifi Calling

Stay connected in more areas than ever before

Frequent business traveller? While mobile coverage can vary from place to place, it’s likely your hotel will provide you with WiFi. With Vodafone’s WiFi Calling, you can make and receive calls without any mobile reception as long as you have a good WiFi connection. The service is also ideal for those living or working in rural areas, where mobile coverage may be inadequate.

How does it work?

All you need to use the WiFi service is a compatible device on a supported tariff.  No extra  hardware or app needed. Calls can be made via your standard address book and from your normal number. Better yet, the person you’re calling doesn’t even need to have Wi-Fi calling.

img_690x200_infographicWi-Fi Calling does not replace cellular calls. If you have a strong mobile signal and a strong Wi-Fi signal, the network will prioritize the mobile network over Wi-Fi.

Why isn’t there an added charge?

There is no additional charge for using the WiFi calling service. Any calls you make will come out of your existing monthly minutes allowance – as normal calls would via a mobile signal!

Compatible devices and plans

Apple

  • iPhone SE
  • iPhone 6
  • iPhone 6S 
  • iPhone 6S Plus
  • iPhone 7
  • iPhone 7 Plus
  • iPhone 8
  • iPhone 8 Plus
  • iPhone X

Samsung

  • Galaxy A3 (2016  & 2017)
  • Galaxy A5 (2016 & 2017)
  • Galaxy S6 & S6 Edge
  • Galaxy S7 & S7 Edge
  • Galaxy S8
  • Galaxy S8+
  • Note 8

Vodafone

  • Smart Ultra 7
  • Smart Platinum 7











Supported plans:

Red Sharer, Business Plus, Business Advance and Red Plans

Please note

Call Waiting settings are not active when you’re on a WiFi call. Services such as Call Waiting, Call Forwarding or Withhold Number can be configured in your device “Settings”. Our support team are more than happy to help with this.
The use of Vodafone’s Voicemail diversion activation / deactivation codes 1210, 1211, 1213 and 1214 and Vodafone’s “Last Caller’s Number” (LCN) retrieval code 1471 are not available when WiFi Calling is enabled. However, you can still check your phone’s call log to see missed calls.
Wi-Fi calling will not work while you’re roaming. In some circumstances you may be able to enable WiFi Calling while abroad, but we recommend you avoid this as you may incur international roaming charges.
If you make a 999 call when using Wi-Fi Calling, your phone will attempt to make that call using a normal mobile reception. If there’s no mobile network available, the call will be routed over Wi-Fi and the emergency services won’t be able to identify the your location automatically.
You currently cannot roam from Wi-Fi to Mobile and vice-versa.
The quality of calls using Wi-Fi Calling is dependent on the Wi-Fi and the if either of these suffer capacity or latency issues, call quality will suffer.

Activate WiFi Calling on your device

To take advantage of Vodafone WiFi Calling, please contact your account manager on 01252 854352 or email sales@cmmtelecoms.co.uk. We are always more than happy to help!

HTC U11 Plus due to launch November 2nd

HTC U11 Plus due to launch November 2nd

HTC has confirmed on Twitter that it will be releasing a new addition to the HTC U series on November 2nd 2017. It’s expected that the HTC U11 Plus will be unveiled. The HTC U11 Plus will be a upgraded version of the existing HTC U11 and be closer to a true flagship in regards to specs and features.

HTC event

Rumours suggest the HTC U11 Plus will feature a 6″ display with an edge-to-edge design, as seen in the recent Apple iPhone X. This will be a 0.5″ increase in screen size compared to the HTC U11. The specs are competitive with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor and 4GB or 6GB of RAM with 64GB or 128GB of storage. The latest flagship will also include a memory card slot so you can expand the capacity.

According to renowned leaker, Evan Blass, the new device will also support Qualcomm’s Quick Charging 3.0, as well as feature the same extra’s as the original U11 such as Edge Sense and BoomSound. Further whispers include a 12MP rear camera and 8MP front camera and the latest Android 8.0 operating system.

Check back at the blog for more updates.

Samsung Pay now available to American Express cardholders in the UK

Samsung Pay now available to American Express cardholders

As of October 19th 2017, Samsung Pay is now available to American Express cardholders in the UK. This comes as the second addition to Samsung Pay over the past few months, with support for cards issued by the Co-operative Bank added in September. In addition to American Express and Co-op, Samsung Pay supports Visa and Mastercard as well as cards issued by First direct, HSBC, M&S Bank, MBNA, Nationwide and Santander.

Image result for samsung pay mini app

While owners of the new Samsung Galaxy Note 8 (please click here for the full review) or the S8/S8+ can take advantage of iris scanner technology to authorise payments, providing a new level of biometric security. You can also set up a card as a ‘transport card’ to use on TfL services. This option means you don’t even need to wake your phone or verify with a fingerprint, iris scanner or PIN – simply touch the middle section of your phone against the card reader.

It’s rumoured that Samsung is planning to roll out the service to other phones lower down it’s range. This previously might have been problematic, due to the need for a fingerprint or iris scanner to authorise payments, but you can now alternatively use a registered passcode. There are also plans for Samsung Pay Mini app which will work with other Android devices, however the UK release date is yet to be known.

Huawei unveils Mate 10 series

Huawei unveils Mate 10 series

Huawei will be releasing it’s latest series in the UK between the end of October and mid October.

Design:

The Mate 10 will be available in Black, Pink Gold, Champagne Gold and Mocha Brown. The Pro version on the other hand, features in Titanium Grey, Midnight Blue, Mocha Brown and Pink Gold. It seems the colour differences are more apparent than the differences in size, with the Pro display just 0.1″ larger. Both devices feature a robust glass casing on the front and back, but the Pro takes durability up a notch with 1P67 water and dust resistance.

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Spec overview:

  • 5.9″ (1440 x 2560 pixels) and 6″ display (1080 x 2160 pixels)
  • Android 7.0 Oreo
  • 4,000mAh high-density battery
  • 4GB of RAM, 6GB for the Pro
  • 64GB internal storage, 128GB for the Pro
  • USB-Type C port

Features:

Huawei believes it’s latest devices are the first true artificially intelligent (AI) smartphone line. Huawei claims the smartphones can learn your behaviour and then adapt to optimise usage, resulting in no device slowdown after 18 months of use. For example, the devices are equipped with a smart battery management system that understands your smartphone behaviour and as a result, allocates resources to maximise battery life. The 4,000mAh battery is claimed to last two days with light use and one day with heavy usage.

“As we enter the age of intelligence, AI is no longer a virtual concept but something that intertwines with our daily life. AI can enhance the user experience; provide valuable services and improve product performance.” – Richard Yu, Huawei Consumer Business Group CEO.

When it comes to photographic capabilities, Huawei has once again joined forces with Leica, the German optics enterprise, renowned for it’s high-quality lightweight rangefinder cameras. The camera has a 12 megapixel RGBM colour lens, paired with a 20 megapixel monochrome lens. The Leica lens is combined with Huawei’s ‘Al’. Al uses intelligent photographic algorithms to identify different types of scenery and objects in real time. By doing so, the camera will automatically adjust the colours, contrast, brightness and exposure for the perfect snap. Other camera features include: f/1.6 aperture lens, phase detection, laser autofocus and dual-LED flash.

For information on the new Huawei devices, please do not hesitate to get in touch with your account manager via email sales@cmmtelecoms.co.uk or phone 01252 854352. Your account manager can also give you information on pay-monthly or SIM only plans once the new devices are available.  We are always more than happy to help!

Will Samsung release a foldable smartphone?

Will Samsung release a foldable smartphone?

After six years of trial and error, Samsung, could be the first company to commercially launch a ‘foldable phone’. In 2011, Samsung’s prototype was able to remain intact after a whopping 100,000 folds with only a 6% drop in brightness at centre (where all the folding happened), however various manufacturing issues prevented the real deal – until now.

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Rumour has it, the South Korean multinational giant could be releasing two new devices, known as the ‘Samsung Galaxy X’ series at the CES consumer technology show in January, 2018. The devices will have a foldable 4K display, so that the resolution will remain high even when the phone is folded. Supposedly, one version will fold from a 5″ handset to an 8″ tablet, while the second version will fold in half to become more compact. Below is a video of Samsung’s futuristic ambitions:

Further whispers suggest that the foldable devices will initially be released in Korea to see demand levels for a flexible phone. Hopefully Samsung’s latest venture won’t go down in flames…